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Thread: Race Horse Mystery Solved (partially)

  1. #1

    Default Race Horse Mystery Solved (partially)



    Phar Lap died of arsenic poisoning

    Jun 19, 12:20 am EDT

    MELBOURNE, Australia (AP)—Forensic scientists say champion Australian gelding Phar Lap died of arsenic poisoning, solving a mystery that has intrigued the horse racing world for more than 75 years.

    Phar Lap won 37 of his 51 starts before his death in mysterious circumstances at Menlo Park in California in April 1932. Days before his death, he won Mexico’s Agua Caliente Handicap, which was then the richest horse race in North America.

    Arsenic poisoning has long been suspected as the cause of Phar Lap’s death, but confirmation had been lacking until Thursday when researchers Dr. Ivan Kempson of the University of South Australia and Dermot Henry, manager of Natural Science Collections at Museum Victoria, released the findings of their forensic investigation.

    Kempson took six hairs from Phar Lap’s mane and analyzed them at the Advanced Photon Source Synchrotron in Chicago, finding that in the 40 hours before Phar Lap’s death the horse had ingested a massive dose of arsenic.


    Phar Lap’s mounted hide is on display at the Melbourne Museum, while his heart is kept at the National Museum of Australia in Canberra.
    “We can’t speculate where the arsenic came from, but it was easily accessible at the time,” Henry said.

    Notebooks kept by Phar Lap’s handler Tommy Woodcock, obtained by Museum Victoria, show the horse was administered tonics and ointments containing both arsenic and strychnine. An accidental overdose has long been considered the likely cause of death.

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  2. #2

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    Someday we'll look upon 9/11 or JFK like this. zg
    Publication Date: Wednesday, May 12, 2004

    Cover story: Phar Lap -- U.S. not guilty

    Phar Lap, Australia's legendary racehorse, died in Atherton in 1932 of natural causes. No poisoning; no Mafia.

    By Marion Softky
    Almanac Staff Writer


    Super horse! Wonder horse! Red Terror! Anzac Antelope!

    With such terms, the Australians glorified their racing giant, Phar Lap. A beacon of triumph during the dark days of the Depression, the 17-hand gelding inspired a country by winning 37 out of 51 races from 1929 to 1932.

    So it's no wonder that conspiracy theories broke out after Phar Lap died -- quickly, painfully and mysteriously -- in Atherton, on April 5, 1932. It was just 16 days after he beat North America's best horses by two lengths in its richest race, the Agua Caliente Handicap, in Tijuana, on March 20.

    That 70 years of interest has brought new insights into the mystery of Phar Lap's death. "Yanks are not guilty" of killing Phar Lap, one paper said recently. The horse didn't die of arsenic or the mob or the Mafia. Death was from natural causes, probably bacterial.

    MORE- http://www.almanacnews.com/morgue/20..._12.plap.shtml
    "The dogs bark but the caravan moves on."
    .....................The Zengrifter Interview (PDF) |
    The Zengrifter / James Grosjean Reputation Debate
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    “Truth, like gold, is obtained not by growth, but by washing away all that is not gold.” — Leo Tolstoy........
    "Is everything a conspiracy? No, just the important stuff." ZG

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